Carpet Installation Terminology

We understand that buying carpet and getting it installed in your house can be an overwhelming and sometimes stressful task. It may seem that as you do more research into the types of product and the installation process that you’re being introduced to more and more terminology that can be quite confusing. To help you through your carpet buying experience, we’ve put together a list of common carpet terminology and their definitions.


Carpet Fiber

Carpet fiber is the type of material from which the strands of carpet are made. All carpet fibers can be classified into one of two categories: natural fibers and synthetic fibers.


Carpet Pad

Carpet pad, or padding, is the foundation of every carpet installation. It is the layer of protection between your carpet and your subfloor. Carpet pad does three main things: absorbs the impact of all the wear and tear your carpet receives, provides plushness underfoot and protects your subfloor.


Carpet Pile

Carpet pile is all the visible fibers you can see on the surface.


Face Weight

Face weight is the weight of the carpet pile. A higher face weight means more yarn and makes for a longer-lasting product.


Natural Fibers

Natural fibers are made of materials that are found in nature and are processed into fibers. Wool is the most common natural fiber in carpet and makes up a relatively small portion of carpets installed today.


Pile Height

Pile height is the height or length of the carpet pile, or all the visible fibers you can see on the surface.

  • Low-pile carpet – under ¼ inch
  • Medium-pile carpet – ¼ to ½ inch
  • High-pile carpet – ½ to ¾ inch


Recycled Pad

Recycled Pad is simply old pad that has been cleaned and repurposed into new padding



Sub flooring is the rough floor or base for your finished flooring (carpet, tile and wood). The subfloor provides support and structural strength for the flooring.


Synthetic fibers

Synthetic fibers are made from materials that are not found in nature. The four major types of synthetic fiber used in carpeting: nylon, polyester, polypropylene and triexta.


Tack strip

Tack strip is what holds the carpet down.